Category Archives: Malaysia

Publishing Perspectives: As KL Book Fair Opens Publishers Eye Booming Southeast Asia


This is an interesting article about the growth of books published in Malaysia. There are some very interesting statistics, for example, “While in 2005, the number of titles published were about 10,000, by 2009, the figure was more than 16,000.” That’s definite growth!

Malaysia has seen rapid growth in the publishing industry, with the government actively supporting. “The number of publishers in the country is estimated to be at 500, with the industry being concentrated in Kuala Lumpur. A majority of them are small and privately owned, while the rest are government institutions, or government-aided institutions such as university presses and publishing departments.” It’s quite encouraging to see this as it means literacy and interest in reading has increased in Malaysia.

Fiction and religious titles are the most popular books in the Malay language. “It is not uncommon for a bestselling title to sell 20,000 copies, while some Malay fiction or religious titles could even sell 50,000 or 100,000 copies.” This shows that Malaysian people are more interested in “home-grown” kinds of material, but imported bestselling titles are still actively pursued.

Overall, this article is a great read with lots of fascinating information to read about how the book publishing industry in Malaysia is growing and influencing the world around it.


Publishing Technology: Publishing Export Market Stats


This article is about the export of books into international markets. It contains some very interesting information about the growth in the demand for English-language content in Asia. “By far the most interesting insight to come out of the AAP’s report was that Asia is now the biggest growth territory for many US publishers’ English language content. Demand for English-language content in rapidly developing countries such as China, Indonesia and Malaysia reflects the high status these societies place on education and particularly English Language learning.” We all know the stereotype of the Asian child forced by their parents to focus on their studies and not socialise with peers. Asian parents want the best for their children so they push them to get more knowledgeable and succeed in earning high marks in school. The above statement supports that stereotype.

The article then semi-contradicts itself by saying, “The same statistics also suggested that there is also a burgeoning market for reading as a leisure activity in Asia, led by increased sales and consumption of children’s, youth and Young Adult content.” It pulls the two statements together by adding that perhaps somehow the improved levels of educational attainment could be creating a generation of young people who will choose to read for leisure and a love for literature.

E-books are creating a pathway for trade and education publishers into the Asian market. It creates a simplified delivery system that is growing rapidly and is sure to help international publishers get their product into the Asian market.